A baby who was abandoned in Obninsk, Russia has a homeless cat to thank for saving his life, after the nurturing feline curled around the boy and shielded him from below freezing temperatures last Saturday.
Residents found the 12-week old infant lying on the floor of an apartment complex entryway, reports Agence France Presse. They were drawn to the scene by meows from "Masha," a cat that lives in a box in the hall, as well as the child's cries.
"[Masha] is very placid and friendly, so when I heard her meowing, I thought that perhaps she had injured herself,” Obninsk resident Irina Lavrova told Central European News. “Normally she would have come and said hello to me. You can imagine my shock when I saw her lying in a box next to a baby.”
Thanks to Masha, who curled around the infant for several hours to keep him warm, he was spared what could have been an untimely end.
"Residents are certain that if the cat hadn't taken care of it, the baby wouldn't have had a chance," an anchor for Russia's TV Zvezda said in a broadcast Thursday.
A resident told Russia's Ruptly video news agency the boy was found with a bag containing baby food and diapers, and appeared to have been well taken care of before his abandonment.
By the time paramedics responded to take the child to a hospital, Masha had grown protective of him, running after the baby and trying to jump into the ambulance after him, adds Russia Today. Neighbors told the site Masha remained in the road for several hours afterward, apparently waiting for someone to bring the infant back.
The Moscow Times reports the boy was rushed to a nearby hospital, where doctors say he was found to be perfectly healthy. Masha is also receiving extra love, attention and cat treats.